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This is very sad. What kind of spouses are those ? You don't return to mommy and daddy because your spouse is deployed. You take up responsibility for yourself and those still in your household.
 

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As an AF veteran and wife for the past 22+ years, it is with great displeasure that I have to affirm that this dumping does happen during deployments. The other thing is that it is not only a deployment issue, but also an issue during times of high transfers (PCS) which occur in the USAF mostly during the summers and early winters. I have on more than one occassion had abandoned animals turn up on my yard or doorstep, including a large, elderly german shepard who was evidently ill and collapsed in my yard several years ago. I probably see it more because I do live in military housing although it is a short distance from the base and does not have very routine military patrols going through. I have a link to the Military Pet Foster Program on my website, but as far as I know, there is not an active program in our area. The shelters (a city kill shelter and a feline no-kill sanctuary) are usually full although I can't say what percentage are military pets.

As far as spouses heading home to "mommy and daddy" during deployments, those that I do see doing this are young wives of lower ranking troops who usually have no job and probably young children. My observation is that these are girls who have little or no experience taking care of themselves on thier own or who are extremely dependent on their spouses and families. They have never been explained/taught what to do during deployments or how to be self-sufficient. I do not make this observations lightly, but as a nurse who saw these girls in the base clinic in tears or visiting mental health because of poor coping skills even before the spouses have left for their deployment. I know all the services offer some kind of support groups for members of deployed troops, but attendance here at our base is low. The squadrons here also have "deployed spouse support groups," but I've heard that they are not very effective. There needs to be more education promoting spousal self-sufficiency during remotes and organized base/post-wide pet fostering programs to help alleviate the problem. The only problem is getting people to attend or to volunteer for these programs.

OK, that's my 2cents worth...I'm off my soapbox now...
 
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